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What Does the Barking of a Service Dog Mean?


 how to stop a dog from barking

Dog barking is a common but annoying problem in many places, especially in quiet homes and crowded public places. Most of us ignore the barking, regard it as rude behavior or/and blame the owner. Sometimes, however, we should get rid of this prejudice and observe the dog’s behavior, because the dog you meet might be a service dog. Service dogs are specially trained to help people with physical or emotional disabilities in an emergency. Barking is part of the training course and implies different meanings like calling for help. Depending on the situation, there are several reasons for the barking of a service dog.

1. Reasons for barking

The barking of a service dog could warn the owner of a seizure or call for help.

Depending on the service the owner requires, a service dog may bark in response to certain situations. For example, a person suffering from diabetes may suddenly experience low blood sugar without any symptoms. However, a well-trained service dog for diabetics can detect the smell of blood sugar changes and alert the person to a particular behavior, such as biting a particular item and barking. This alarming behavior can remind the owner to take medication or leave the current situation.

In an emergency situation, a service dog can play an important role in saving his owner’s life. If the owner suffers from an acute attack or needs help from other people, the service dog will sit with the owner and bark to attract the attention of others or to turn to strangers for help. 

2. Anti-barking training

Since service dogs are a type of working dog that differs from other household pets, they have to accompany the owner to various public places, including  “No Pets” buildings. Service dogs must undergo rigorous training so that they behave gently and remain calm in social situations or environments. The dog that barks unreasonably and behaves roughly is not a qualified service dog.

3. Non-aggressive behavior

Although service dogs are allowed to bark, they are trained to bark in a non-aggressive manner. Before you go outside with the service dog, make sure that he is friendly and well-mannered without threatening or disturbing the public. We can tell by his behavior whether it is a service dog, even if the barking dog does not wear a service dog vest. An aggressive dog always barks along with other threatening behaviors such as anger, roaring, growling, pulling on the leash, etc.

4. No-barking regulations

The Americans with Disabilities Act states that no business can discriminate against the person using a service dog or deny entry to a service dog. However, the service dog, who is constantly barking, may be asked to leave the venue on certain occasions, such as at museums and theaters, taking into account the feelings of other visitors and public safety. Therefore, the dog’s owner should master the service dog and respond immediately to the barking. However we should pay attention to the owner of a service dog if the dog is barking, in case there is an emergency and our help is needed.